It’s been a strange week or so for Eyal Booker, who was dumped from The Island alongside Adam’s third lady friend, Zara McDermott. But what does he make of ‘Muggy’ Megan’s antics, and if he had his chance again from day one, who would he choose to couple up with?
Hi Eyal, tell us what’s it like coming back into the real world after your time in the villa?
‘It’s been so overwhelming. The love and support I’ve received since coming out has been great and people have been so lovely – the most obvious change is my social media following, but I won’t let it rule my life! I now have a platform to do some good and I want to start working with some children’s charities, dog’s charities, and charities fighting for our oceans to be rid of plastic.’
Who were you closest to?
‘I’d say Jack or Wes.’
What do you think of the way Wes has behaved on the show over the last week?
‘I’m not surprised by how he’s handling stuff with Megan, although I was surprised by how he ended it with Laura! When he walked in from Casa Amor alone, I think he proved he isn’t just going to couple up with anyone – he likes Megan a lot and that’s the point of the show, to find the right person. I respect that.’
What about Megan. What do you make of her recent antics?
‘It’s what the show is all about and she’s going after what she wants. She was always into Wes and they get on well.’
That’s very gracious of you, considering it didn’t work out between the two of you. If you had your time again, who would you go for on day one?
‘I would pick Dani. After getting to know her I realised we were on the same page about a lot of things – we’re both very chilled and laid back and we had fun. We got on really well. She’s a lovely girl, but at the time she didn’t catch my eye at the start like Hayley did. It was more when I got to know Dani that I realised how lovely she was.’
There’s been lots in the press about Love Island being a bit staged, is this true?
‘I think it’s changed quite a bit from last year. It seems they’ve added more cameras this year, and the producers only ever got involved when we were on a challenge when we needed to be given instructions, or when there was a date outside of the villa and the camera crew came along. So no, it’s not staged at all, it’s very much all reality!’
We’ve just got to know, are you kept up to date with any news outside?
‘We have no idea what’s going on in the outside world, we aren’t even updated on World Cup scores! There’s just no concept of time really, but you get used to it and I like to think we all adapted well. The hardest part about it all is not speaking with family – I just wanted to know they were okay.’
So when there’s no challenges or parties, what sort of things do you get up to day-to-day?
‘It’s fun, but it does get a little boring, too. We would make up things to do during the day like silly games. Otherwise, we’d just be getting to know each other and have lots of interesting conversations, which were often cut from the episodes!’
We never see anyone eating on camera, unless it’s part of a challenge. So what do you eat in there?!
‘Breakfast is always made by us, but lunch and dinner are catered. There’s always a meat and fish option and a vege/vegan alternative, with a carb option like rice, chips or potatoes, and then there’s salad too. So everyone is catered for! The food was actually really good and it was always changing so we didn’t get bored.’
Who would you snog, marry, pie from this year’s girls if you could do it again?
‘I’d still pie Megan, I’d still snog Ellie because I think she was a lovely girl and I wanted to get to know her more, and of course I would still choose to marry Dani. She was Mother Theresa in the house. Although, I might have chosen to snog Georgia… I like how genuine and loyal she is.’
What do you think about the way Josh has treated her?
‘I love them both so it’s hard for me to be one-sided. Josh is doing his thing right now and that’s the point of the show. He’s gone after the girl he really wants and I saw a change in him when Kaz came into the villa – I can tell he really likes her so I will stick up for him in that sense.’
Now for the all-important question: do you get to keep those water bottles?
‘Yes! We do, but sadly I went and left mine in a hotel. I would hope they will send me a replacement but if they don’t I might buy one just for sentimental reasons!’